Article published in:Motivation in Grammar and the Lexicon
Edited by Klaus-Uwe Panther and Günter Radden
[Human Cognitive Processing 27] 2011
► pp. 49–70
The mind as ground
A study of the English existential construction
Working within the cognitive linguistics theoretical framework (Langacker 1987, 1991; Talmy 2000a, 2000b) and based on the Ground-before-Figure (GbF) model developed in Chen (2003), this paper argues that the there-existential construction presents a ground before a figure. As such, the construction is motivated by perceptual considerations (Radden & Panther 2004), resulting in the kind of cognitive efficiency that aids the processing of information for the hearer.
Published online: 29 June 2011